Joe Douglas

Have the Jets had a successful free agency so far?

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Reacting to the Jets offseason moves in free agency…

With the first week of NFL free agency almost over, I will be assessing how well I think the new signings will be for Gang Green, and also how General Manager Joe Douglas has done over the course of the last week.

NFL free agency started with some high profile names out there. Wide receivers such as, Kenny Golladay, Juju Smith-Schuster and Will Fuller. Also lineman on either side of the ball such as, Joe Thuney, Matt Judon, Carl Lawson and Yannick Ngakoue. Defensive backs, Richard Sherman, Shaquill Griffin and Patrick Peterson were available.

Jets offseason moves: Jets free agency analysis

After seeing how many deals the New England Patriots made, it was a slow first day for Jet nation.

However, after dark, Joe Douglas struck. He did this by signing former Detroit Lions 2017 first round draft pick Jarrad Davis to a one-year deal. After that it was time for two big splashes. First, former Tennessee Titans wide receiver Corey Davis to a three-year deal worth $37.5 million. Big money, but it had to be with the Jets being desperate in the passing game department.


Then came the second: Edge-rusher Carl Lawson. Lawson didn’t get the contract extension in Cincinnati which many thought would happen. Douglas pounced and spent big to sign Lawson to a three-year deal worth $45 million.

Since then, the Jets have made more opportunistic moves, signing out of favour free agents. These include cornerback Justin Hardee who is a special teams machine, electric wide-receiver Keenan Cole, offensive lineman Dan Feeney and safety Lamarcus Joyner. All signed to one year ‘prove it’ deals, which are clever moves from the New York GM.

With many holes still on the roster, we haven’t yet seen further moves from Joe Douglas and co, but the ones we’ve seen so far are beneficial for different reasons.

Benefits of Jets free agent signings

Firstly, we will look at the two big names, Davis and Lawson.

Corey Davis was the number one receiver in Nashville until NFL stud A.J. Brown walked through the doors in 2019. The Titans proved that they didn’t need Davis any longer, which was why he walked into free agency.


For whoever the quarterback is in 2021, the passing game needed to be addressed and with the signing of Corey Davis, this has been done.

Many were disappointed by Gang Green not going after the more star names like Kenny Golladay or Juju Smith-Schuster, but it is clear to see that right now for the Jets it’s all about culture and building a winning team. Davis is crucial to this philosophy, with him being a player who eats, sleeps and breathes the game. This is something new coach Robert Saleh was looking for. I think Davis will make some plays at MetLife and will compliment Denzel Mims and Jamison Crowder nicely.

Carl Lawson is arguably the most exciting signing the Jets have made in years. The 25-year-old edge-rusher has put up some impressive numbers for the Cincinnati Bengals, especially last season.

He is a character on & off the field and a player who is certainly excited to be the first legitimate threat on the edge the Jets have had since John Abraham.

Jarrad Davis is quite a sneaky signing. The former Detroit defensive back can get it done, he has just been played in the wrong positions for the Lions. He will play as a linebacker alongside the returning C.J. Mosley and he could turn out to be a sneakily good acquisition.

Impressive minor deals

The other deals include Keelan Cole, Dan Feeney and Justin Hardee. All three of these will be handy additions to the Jets team and will all make an impact.

Cole will add depth to the receiver room and will also make some plays in the meantime. Feeney is a greatly welcomed body to beef up the offensive line when needed and Hardee will be the star of special teams.

All in all, it hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows for Joe Douglas and he has had to work for the deals he’s completed. The Jets have missed out on targets throughout the course of the week.

Wide-receiver Juju Smith-Schuster was one. He opted to resign with the Steelers and safety Keanu Neal chose the Dallas Cowboys over a reunion with his former defensive coach Jeff Ulbrich in the big apple.

On a more positive slant, it is shaping up to be an interesting offseason, with plenty of quality players left and of course the draft is round the corner.

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